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Today’s episode is all about building a shape with your body and training factors that can help with that. I know that I don’t often talk about physique, but, fuzzy changes do happen with the clients that I work with as a byproduct of our training methods. So that is the angle that I am taking today’s episode from.
We can’t spot train fat away, but we can absolutely spot train our muscles, and choose to develop certain ones over other ones with training methodologies. Which is actually one of my favorite things about muscle – Our ability to manipulate it through training and stimulus.
If you are a trainer, feel free to apply this to your client programming, and if you are a trainee, currently following a program, feel free to focus in on some of these elements of training.
First off, we will cover three different training factors today. But all of them assume that you are consistent with your training. And that the training, or programming itself is purpose driven.
Slowing down also builds proficiency with a movement. So if you’ve ever heard someone talk about mind muscle connection and your ability to recruit muscle fibers, slowing down the tempo can be one factor that will help with that. When building muscle, we want to recruit as many muscle fibers as we can. Bringing mental awareness to the area that we are working, and the pattern that we are building can be helpful with that. We want to build proficiency always. So if you have just been going through the motions, consider focusing in on your tempo, and proficiency. Think about the muscle that you are working, visualize it, look at it if you can.
As I mentioned mechanical tension or load is needed in order to stimulate the muscle for growth. We want muscle protein synthesis more than we want muscle protein breakdown. That’s literally how we get hypertrophy. And that requires a challenging load. Generally speaking I would want a client to be working at a RIR of two or less when attempting to build muscle. That means leaving two reps in reserve at the end of a set. That just means that it’s challenging. And that’s what we want if we are to build muscle.
I would argue that most people are not working as hard as they should in the gym. As hard or as proficient. Really push yourself. You can always lower the weight if needed. I use the rule of two with my clients. If you can’t complete the last two reps you need to do another site with lighter weight. And you should be in struggling on the last two reps that be able to perform 1 to 2 more without completely breaking form.
I will note, this will also require you to take legitimate rest periods in between sets. If you are working at a high RPE he will not be able to just bounce between exercises and a super set with zero rest. Not if you want to continue with a higher level of performance. If your program doesn’t involve rest periods, or you haven’t been sticking to them, give that a go and see what happens. I would rest at least one minute between sets.
That’s it. Those are three training factors and quick tips on how to improve the shape of your body through training your muscles. Remember that we can spot build muscle, but we can’t spot train fat away. So focus on building the shape you would like through building different muscles in the body. We’re just trying for performance and see what happens with your physique.
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I'm an adventurous introvert from Vancouver, Washington who lives on sleep + "me time." I'm a lover of lifting weights, dinosaurs, real talk and traveling with my husband. I am here to help you move better, lift more, bust the myths of the fitness industry, and inspire you to love the process.
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